Ways That Social Media Can Affect Your Injury Claim
Do you use social media websites, like Facebook, Twitter or Instagram? Chances are, if you are reading this article, the answer is yes. According to Pew Research Center in 2014, nearly 75 percent of Internet users were active on some form of social media, and that number has likely gone up since then. Social media is an excellent tool for people to keep up with their friends and families, reconnect with old acquaintances and even for seeking new meaningful employment. But social media can have a dark side, and this is especially true if you are pursuing a personal injury claim.
How is it that your social media posts can come back to bite you when you’re trying to seek damages for an injury? When you make a claim against another party, that party is going to do everything in its power to limit the amount of damages it is liable for. So, you can bet that the opposition’s attorneys are going to pore over every aspect of your life that they have access to. That includes social media, information that is public domain.
Here’s an example of how your injury claim can be challenged based on social media. Christine is involved in a slip-and-fall accident at a local hotel. She is walking down a set of stairs when a loose guardrail slips, sending her tumbling to the landing below. Christine hurts her hip and sues the hotel for damages, claiming that her hip injury has left her unable to drive to work.
A few weeks later, Christine’s daughter has a birthday. On social media, Christine posts a selfie of herself driving her daughter to the local theme park for a day of fun. The hotel’s attorneys find the picture and use it as evidence that Christine lied about her inability to drive.
Christine also claims emotional distress following her accident that left her depressed and unable to see her friends – two points both contradicted by a gushing Tumblr post describing her amazing girl’s night out with friends.
Do yourself a favor – if you are in the middle of pursuing an injury claim, stay off social media.